Despite the war, Europeans still demand gas from the Russian giant Gazprom

  • Gazprom said its European customers requested 57 million cubic meters of gas on April 17.
  • Russia’s demand is lower than last year, but the EU is still struggling to shake off its reliance.
  • State-owned Gazprom also pays Ukraine billions to move gas through the country.

State-backed Russian oil giant Gazprom continues to ship millions of tonnes of gas to Europe via Ukraine as energy demands continue, albeit at a lower level than last year, according to a statement by Reuters.

In the statement, Gazprom said gas requests stood at 57 million cubic meters for April 17, down from last week’s figure of 91.3 million cubic meters on April 8, also reported. by Reuters.

Gazprom is paying Naftogaz of Ukraine NJSC for the privilege of moving some of its gas through the country. According to a statement from the Ukrainian public group, Gazprom paid Naftogaz $2.11 billion in 2020 for transit services.

Data compiled by European think tank Breugel shows Russian gas imports were 26% lower in the first week of April than in the same period of 2021, after peaking in the week after the invasion .

Europe depends on Russia for more than a third of its gas

Around 40% of the gas consumed in Europe comes from Russia, according to the International Energy Agency. The EU announced restrictions on oil and gas imports after Russia invaded Ukraine in February, and plans to cut its dependence on Russian fuel by two-thirds this year.

It also ended its ambitious Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project, as reported by Insider’s Bill Bostock. The pipeline, owned mainly by Russian gas company Gazprom, cost 10 billion euros to build ($11.5 billion) and was expected to transport 55 billion cubic meters of natural gas each year.

The bloc wants to eventually end its dependence on Russian gas by 2030 by increasing flows from other suppliers and developing renewable sources.

But Russian President Vladimir Putin does not take the threat of a European ban on Russian energy as seriously as European leaders might wish.

“The so-called partners of hostile countries admit that they will not be able to do without Russian energy resources, including without natural gas, for example,” Putin said during a televised government meeting on April 14, reported by Reuters. .

Indeed, a ban on Russian oil and gas has met with stiff resistance from European economies dependent on Russian sources. The EU is considering expanding its sanctions to include a ban on Russian coal instead.

Still, experts suggest the EU could cope with such a ban. And last week Putin’s former chief economic adviser, Andrei Illarionov, told the BBC’s Talking Business that completely stemming the flow of Russian gas and oil to Europe would end the war in ” some months”.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, meanwhile, said on April 7 that Europeans are paying for Russian gas with Ukrainian lives.

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